Friday, March 24, 2017

Tossing their heads in sprightly dance

We took ourselves for a city walk yesterday. It was drizzling first thing but we looked at the weather forecast, which said it would dry up from 10am onwards, and decided to believe it. And it was correct: the triumph of science. We got the bus to London Road, the area where my father grew up. According to my aunt (his sister) the reason they moved away down to the seaside was that she fell off a wall just opposite here and the doctor prescribed swimming, to strengthen her arm. So they bought a house near Portobello baths, which led to my mother meeting my father, which eventually led to my brother and me. So thanks, wall.

We wiggled through some streets, including McDonald Road, where my dad was born 97 years ago - and I thought about him. And then we came to this path...

which led to the Botanics. It's definitely spring now. Edinburgh doesn't like to underdo daffodils.

A gushing, if entirely artificial, Highland burn (stream).

We stopped there for lunch, wincing at their punctuation. At least they can spell "inconvenience", unlike some.

Then we wandered through Inverleith Park. You can see the Castle on the horizon. In Edinburgh, you can probably either see the Castle or the sea, and if not, you're likely to be able to see some hills, all of which make it reasonably easy to know which direction you're pointing in. It was much brighter than it looks here; my camera was dazzled by the water.

We stopped to watch two swans building their nest (spring again, you see) in a reasonably equal-opportunities sort of way.

More daffodils.

On our way back we walked through the New Town, up Scotland Street. I don't know if anyone who reads this has also read Alexander McCall Smith's Scotland Street stories, but anyway, this is it.

And eventually we were back in London Road, to which I owe my existence. Upon these slender threads do all our existences hang.


  1. I read Alexander McCall Smith but not that series. Good? I love the daffodils. My town has a daffodil festival/parade in April. :) I despise the overuse of apostrophes!

  2. Ah, daffodils! I miss them! Lovely tour of your lovely town....

  3. You live in a beautiful City.

  4. When in doubt put in a greengrocer's apostrophe seems to be the rule. If only people realised how much simpler it is. The sprinkling of capitals was a bit liberal too. Lovely daffodils. So heartening.

  5. Lovely spring! We will have to wait a bit longer here, but I leave for a week in Florida tomorrow. The streets I remember best in Edinburgh are Melville Street and Eglinton Crescent where D.E. Stevenson was born and raised.

  6. I just noticed a few of my daffodils blooming this morning, as we were leaving for work in the dark. (I really should venture outside more on the weekends LOL.) I love your walks and oh, how I wish I were beside you on all of them. Your pictures and text are the next best thing. (And I chuckled - as I was scrolling down I read the sign and thought "She's definitely going to have something to say about those apostrophes LOL.)

  7. Lovely daffs, and the sprinkling of crocuses (croci?) were very pretty too. I enjoyed the Scotland Street series, but not as much as the African stories where the rhythms of the African language were so clear and musical. We've only spent a few nights in Edinburgh so I appreciated coming with you on your walk. Thank you.